Get Ambassador amrketing delivered right to your inbox!

40 Word-of-Mouth Marketing Statistics That You Should Know Image.png

40+ Word-of-Mouth Marketing Statistics That You Should Know

6 minute read

For centuries, people have made big decisions and developed everyday preferences using the simple yet resounding power of word-of-mouth. It’s no coincidence that you and your best friend share a few of the same favorite things. Who doesn’t love hearing about a great product or service from a trustworthy source? 

As more brands work to boost their lead acquisition process using organic networks, there’s much to gain from developing a killer word-of-mouth marketing strategy. But before you start using referral marketing software to up your revenue using the remarkable power of recommendations and referrals, you need  to fully grasp why word-of-mouth is valuable and how your brand can influence it. Here’s a comprehensive list of word-of-mouth marketing statistics to help you get started.

People Seek Truth And Share Opinions Online and Offline 

84% of consumers say they either completely or somewhat trust recommendations from family, colleagues, and friends about products and services – making these recommendations the highest ranked source for trustworthiness. [Nielsen]

  • 74% of consumers identify word-of-mouth as a key influencer in their purchasing decision. [Ogilvy/Google/TNS]

  • 68% trust online opinions from other consumers, which is up 7% from 2007 and places online opinions as the third most trusted source of product information. [Nielsen]

  • 88% of people trust online reviews written by other consumers as much as they trust recommendations from personal contacts. [BrightLocal]

    • 32% feel this way if there are multiple customer reviews

    • 30% give them equal trust when they believe the online review is authentic

    • 26% say it depends on the type of business.

  • 72% say reading a positive customer reviews increase their trust in a business; it takes, on average, 2-6 reviews to get 56% of them to this point. [BrightLocal]

  • On social media, 58% of consumers share their positive experiences with a company, and ask family, colleagues, and friends for their opinions about brands. [SDL]

Download The eBook

B2B Brands Use Referrals, Too

  • 91% of B2B buyers are influenced by word-of-mouth when making their buying decision. [USM]

  • 61% of IT buyers report that colleague recommendations are the most important factor when making a purchase decision. [B to B Magazine]

  • 56% of B2B purchasers look to offline word-of-mouth as a source of information and advice, and this number jumps to 88% when online word-of-mouth sources are included. [BaseOne]

Word-of-Mouth Referrals Create Real Value

  • Word-of-mouth has been shown to improve marketing effectiveness by up to 54%. [MarketShare]

  • When specific case studies were analyzed, researchers found a 10% increase in word-of-mouth (off and online) translated into a sales lifts between 0.2 – 1.5%. [MarketShare/ Keller Fay Group]

  • 84% of consumers reported always or sometimes taking action based on personal recommendations. 70% said they did the same of online consumer opinions. [Nielsen]

  • The average value of a Facebook fan in certain consumer categories is $174. [Syncapse]

  • 43% of social media users report buying a product after sharing or favoriting it on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. Over half of purchases inspired by social media sharing occur within 1 week of sharing or favoriting, and 80% of purchases resulting from social media shares occur within 3 weeks of sharing. [VisionCritical]

  • Millennials ranked word-of-mouth as the #1 influencer in their purchasing decisions about clothes, packaged goods, big-ticket items (like travel and electronics), and financial products. Baby Boomers also ranked word-of-mouth as being most influential in their purchasing decisions about big-ticket items and financial products. [Radius Global]

Influencers Love Incentives

  • 79% of people say their primary reason for "liking" a company's Facebook page is to get discounts. 81% also said they're influenced by what their friends share on social media. [Market Force]

  • 77% of brand conversations on social media are people looking for advice, information, or help. 18% were positive reviews of the brand. [Mention]

  • Brands that inspire a higher emotional intensity receive 3x as much word-of-mouth as less emotionally-connected brands. [Keller Fay Group] The same academic study also found that highly differentiated brands earn more positive word-of-mouth. [Journal of Marketing Research]

  • Despite assumptions that Gen C only describes millennials, 39% of the world's Gen C'ers are over 35 years old. 75% of Gen C'ers curate and share online content every week. [Google]

  • 66% of respondents under the age of 34 are likely to give a referral after receiving social recognition. [Software Advice]

  • More than 50% of respondents are likely to give a referral if offered a direct incentive, social recognition or access to an exclusive loyalty program. [Software Advice]

  • 39% of respondents say monetary or material incentives such as discounts, free swag or gift cards greatly increase their chances of referring a brand. [Software Advice]

Word-Of-Mouth Makes Sense for Marketers 

The Word-of-Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) released the "State of Word-of-Mouth Marketing" survey in January 2014, and it gives insight into what marketers think of word-of-mouth marketing.

  • 64% of their survey respondents mostly or completely agree that word-of-mouth marketing is more effective than traditional marketing.

  • Half indicated that they've incorporated word-of-mouth marketing into their traditional marketing campaigns.

  • 70% of respondents are planning to increase their online WOMM spend, and 29% will increase their offline word-of-mouth marketing spend.

  • 82% use word-of-mouth marketing to increase their brand awareness, but 43% expect word-of-mouth marketing to improve their direct sales.

It’s easy to understand the buzz around word-of-mouth marketing, but the most challenging aspect is creating a word-of-mouth marketing strategy that works for your business and your customers. Keep these stats handy as you identify, inspire, and incentivize key customers and influencers who can unlock important referrals through word-of-mouth.

Download The eBook

Posted in Word-of-Mouth, Referral Marketing

Amity Kapadia

Written by Amity Kapadia

Amity Kapadia is Director of Content Marketing at Ambassador. She spends most of her days marketing to marketers and having the internal debate, to pizza or not to pizza?

Subscribe To Our Blog

Stay informed about the latest referral marketing trends, tips, and insights.